The Oregon Trail is one of the most exciting units in U.S. history taught in middle school and junior high. All the information you’ll need to teach this unit plus 60 colorful illustrations are provided in the accompanying slide show and narrative script in “The Oregon Trail and You.”
You can also make this era in American history an interactive one for your students by giving them a chance to write “I Was There” journal entries as though they were a traveler on the Oregon Trail, or a chance to create one of three art projects included in this unit.
The slide show, which includes 21 slides full of dramatic illustrations, introduces students to daily life along the Oregon Trail and the dangers settlers would encounter on the way. Use the accompanying 12-page script with more than 100 bulleted facts to give your students the information they will need to write any of the four journal entries suggested in the slide show. Teachers may make copies of the template provided for students to write their journal entries on.
Art projects include:
1. Display of the most exciting of their journal entries around a bulletin board map of the U.S. and the Oregon Trail.
2.Creation of quilt block patterns out of fabric, construction paper, wallpaper of scrapbook paper. These quilt blocks can also be used to write one or two-sentence dramatic recitations of something that happened on the trail.
3.Filling in a paper model of a covered wagon with supplies settlers would need along the Oregon Trail - patterns supplied.
This unit’s slide show is available in both Apple’s Keynote and Microsoft’s Power Point. All text and patterns are available as PDFs.